Tree planting BLITZ

Driving along Guerrero Street this morning, I saw scores of Friends of the Urban Forest volunteers, busily planting palm trees and shrubs into the newly un-concreted median divider from about 27th Street and south. Plants were being provided by Guerrero Street Gardens, my favorite open-lot city nursery, and the whole effort will have a hugely positive impact upon that stretch of the neighborhood.

Like many new-to-SFers, I have often commented on the lack of inner city greenery. I understand many of the obstacles that have resulted in the current state – street widening overtaking center dividers, sidewalk widening to meet accessible path requirements – but the result is that many transit corridors of the city are strictly stark hardscape, and the efforts of the FUF are greatly appreciated by me and many others.

FUF’s tree planting blitz doesn’t stop at Guerrero Street, either – they were planting this morning in the North Panhandle neighborhood as well, and have several other city plantings scheduled through the end of this year. Check out the locations, and if you’re one who’ll benefit from having a greenery facelift along your transit route, why not consider lending a hand? I’m signing up for the Nob Hill/Tenderloin Tree Care event next Saturday!

As an aside, this comes on the heels of some recent publicity that the Lower Polk Neighbors Association received over their ongoing interaction with local activists over the Association’s movement to plant more trees in the neighborhood. The opposition cites that the tree planting is just one step in the process of creating a “sanitized vision for the future” (of the Tenderloin district).

I say to those opposed parties, take a look at other pocket neighbohoods in this city – where drugs, prostitution and other crimes appear to persist regardless of the amount of foilage facing the curb. The tree planting amounts to a move towards “sanitation” in the environmental sense, rather than a socio-political one.

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